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Press Releases 2020
Consulate General of India
70th Foundation Day of ICCR on 9 April 2020
The Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) is celebrating its 70th Foundation Day on 9 April. However, the grand celebrations planned earlier are now postponed by a year in the wake of Covid-19.
“ICCR is all about cultivating an enlightened understanding of Indian culture and when the entire Global community is facing an unprecedented challenge, feeling lonely and disconnected, the message of Indian philosophy i.e. Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam or the world is a family has become more relevant than anytime in the past. Even in this lockdown situation, ICCR is conducting e-tutorials in Yoga, classical dances and even Hindi and Sanskrit. We are working with a ‘show must go on spirit’. A Global Art Competition on the theme of facing the challenge of Covid-19 unitedly has already been announced and through many such programmes we will rise to the occasion”, ICCR President Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe said in his Message on this occasion.
ICCR was founded in 1950 by India's first Education Minister, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, with the objective of fostering and strengthening cultural relations and mutual understanding between India and the world, and to promote cultural exchanges with other countries and people.
During the last seven decades, the functioning of ICCR as an institution has acquired newer dimensions towards promotion of India’s cultural heritage and has emerged as the ‘soft power’ arm of the Ministry of External Affairs through an array of well-designed and targeted programmes.
A wide-range of ICCR’s cultural, academic and intellectual exchanges and promotion of India’s culture abroad encompass various outreach activities through its 39 cultural centres abroad and 19 Regional Offices within India, including Indian art, history, oral traditions, dance, music, yoga, languages, food, festivals and contemporary issues.
Major programmes under the ambit of ICCR being conducted for the larger objective of creating an enlightened understanding of Indian culture amongst the global community, could be broadly categorised as follows:
i. Promotion of Indian art forms by sponsoring visits of Indian cultural delegations abroad and holding Festivals of India abroad;
ii. Hosting foreign cultural troupes and international Cultural Festivals in India;
iii. Exhibitions of art and Craft in India and abroad;
iv. Gifting Busts and Statues of India’s iconic figures abroad;
v. Executing scholarship schemes for international students;
vi. Fellowship programmes, establishing Indian Chairs in foreign institutions/universities;
vii. Inviting distinguished and academic visitors from abroad to give them a glimpse of India;
viii. Awards programme (alumni, Indology and Sanskrit);
ix. Promotion of understanding of Indian languages, especially Hindi and Sanskrit and also Indian literature, abroad;
x. Promotion of Yoga and celebration of International Day of Yoga abroad;
xi. Conducting Annual Lecture Series ( Deen Dayal Upadhaya Memorial Oration to mark the World Culture Day on May 21)
Over the years, through this cross fertilization of ideas, ideals and cultures, ICCR has taken our millennia old civilizational and cultural values to the world and has fostered the goal of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam- the world as a family. The strong cadre of ICCR alumni, who are infused with the same spirit of enlightened globalization has been instrumental in spreading ICCR’s message. The council now annually offers about 4,000 scholarships for Undergraduate, Postgraduate, M. Phil./Ph.D and Post-Doctoral Fellowships in various Indian Universities/Institutes.
The quest for knowledge has always been fundamental to Indian Culture and Civilisation. Since time immemorial, India has attracted knowledge-seekers and inquisitive minds from all over the world. India continues to be a centre for learning and promotes academic exchanges through Conferences, seminars, Chairs of Indian Studies and the activities of Alumni of Indian institutions.
Seven decades of our existence is a matter of pride and joy. Due to the ongoing COVID19 pandemic that we face, ICCR will mark this occasion of its Foundation Day on 9th April by undertaking various online activities in India and abroad. Essay Competitions for international students and Indian diaspora will be held in india and all over the world. A blog space of ICCR students studying in India shall be launched and our Indian Missions abroad shall celebrate the day in their respective countries of accreditation in a befitting manner.
Consulate General of India
04 February, 2020
Government of India has issued a clarification regarding the proposal in the Finance Bill 2020 on deemed tax residency in India, which is placed below:
“The Finance Bill, 2020 has proposed that an Indian citizen shall be deemed to be resident in India, if he is not liable to be taxed in any country or jurisdiction. This is an anti-abuse provision since it is noticed that some Indian citizens shift their stay in low or not tax jurisdiction to avoid payment of tax in India.
The new provision is not intended to include tax net those Indian citizens who are bonafide workers in other countries. In some section of the media the new provision is being interpreted to create an impression that those Indians who are not liable to tax in these countries will be taxed in India on the income that they have earned there. This interpretation is not correct.
In order to avoid any misinterpretation, it is clarified that in case of an Indian citizen who becomes deemed resident of India under this proposed provision, income earned outside India by him shall not be taxed in India unless it is derived from an Indian business or profession. Necessary clarification, if required, shall be incorporated in the relevant provision of the law.”
Consulate General of India
“Advisory/Information for students
desirous of pursuing medical studies abroad”
1. Over the years, there has been an increase in the number of Indian students going abroad to pursue medical education. Earlier, all students interested in taking a medical qualification from outside India were required to get an eligibility certificate from the government before leaving for their studies. However, since 2019, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has made mandatory for the students to clear the NEET-UG (National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test-Under Graduate) exam, which is the entry examination for undergraduate medical education in India, as a prerequisite to pursue medical education abroad.
2. Beginning 2019, only those students who appear for the NEET-UG for admission to Undergraduate medical education in India will be eligible to appear for the screening test, namely, the Foreign Medical Graduates’ Exam (FMGE). This step has been an important advancement in screening of students and has been well received by the host countries as well. However, as the quality of education in various countries differs considerably; continued and systematic efforts in providing guidance to students regarding selection of course and institution to gain maximum academic exposure is needed.
3. As per the IMC (Indian Medical Council) Act, 1956, all students who acquire a medical qualification from countries outside India are required to clear the FMGE in order to practice in India. The Exam is conducted by the National Board for Examination (NBE) twice (i.e. in June and December) every year.
4. It may be noted that the number of students, having medical degrees from Institutions abroad, appearing for FMGE in 2009 was 6170, which has increased to 21,351 in 2018. However, the pass percentage of students appearing for the FMGE has been very low, and continues to be below 20%. NBE has published a list of country-wise performance of Indian candidates in FMGE for the period 2015-2018 (copy attached).
5. All Indian students desiring to undertake medical education abroad should take into account the above mentioned information. In case they need any clarification about any particular institution, they may contact Indian Mission in the country where they seek to take admission. The students are also advised to visit official website of Medical Council of India (https://www.mciindia.org) constantly to know the list of accredited foreign medical institutions/universities for MBBS or equivalent courses; and other important useful information.